Loss of Firearm Rights and Family Violence Convictions
Consequences of Family Violence
Federal law prohibits anyone with a felony conviction, a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction or who is subject to a domestic violence protective order from possessing firearms. The State of Texas plays a role in enforcing this law and places similar restrictions on the firearms rights of those with domestic violence (i.e. family violence) convictions or those subject to protective orders. Indeed, this is one of the lesser-known consequences of a family violence conviction but not one that is without impact, especially in one of the most heavily armed states in the country.
A Flaw in the Law
Prohibiting firearm possession isn’t always enough. Texas does not have a law requiring those prohibited from possessing firearms to turn guns and ammunition in. In some states, defendants must bring their firearms to the police department or to a licensed buyer and provide the court with proof. Also, you can still purchase guns from sellers or dealers who don’t run background checks even if you lose your firearm rights.
That said, enforcement of this law is difficult in Texas and relies on factors such as proper reporting and steep penalties for offenders. While Texans may not be required to provide proof they relinquished their firearms, they can face harsh penalties if they are caught unlawfully possessing a firearm. Unlawful possession of a firearm in Texas is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in a local or county jail and potentially a fine of up to $4,000.
Don’t Want to Lose Your Firearm Rights? Fight Your Charges
The only way to avoid losing your firearm rights is to avoid a family violence conviction. Now, we realize that is easier said than done. But talking to a skilled family violence defense attorney in the Dallas-Fort Worth area is a good starting point. Due to the long-lasting (and far-reaching) consequences of a family violence conviction, we recommend you thoroughly discuss your case before you enter a plea. An attorney can explain the penalties you could face for a conviction in addition to the various collateral consequences, such as loss of firearms rights.
If you’re facing family violence charges in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, JBabb – Criminal Defense Attorneys is here to help. JBabb – Criminal Defense Attorneys will advise you on the best course of action to protect your rights. With law offices in Dallas and Denton, our attorneys provide compassionate legal services to Dallas, Collin, Denton, Ellis, Rockwall and Tarrant counties. Our experienced attorneys handle a wide variety of criminal cases including DWI/DUI, assault/family violence, and other misdemeanors and felonies. Call (214) 329-9433, email email@example.com, or fill out our confidential online form to schedule a consultation with a Dallas-Fort Worth criminal defense attorney.